It’s been awhile since I’ve ranted.
This is because I would just sit down, FLAMING PISSED, write out a blog post, and then post it right away. What I’ve found is that this practice of “ranting without letting it sit” usually results in either me being misunderstood, or people I really like being offended by something I wrote.
Well, this one’s been simmering for a few years now, and I promise I’ll read it at least one more time before I post it.
I feel that it’s time to post a reminder:
I am still an actual human being. In case anyone is concerned that the fact that I have had children makes me . . . what? An alien? Stupid? Boring? Trivial? A weird shell of who I used to be? I can assure you that my thoughts are just as legitimate as they were before those crazy ole lady hormones took over my brain.
I always tell myself to just walk away when someone’s Facebook status makes me angry. I mean, really, a Facebook status is usually just a little snip of the offhanded part of someone’s brain; they probably didn’t put too much thought into it when they posted it. The fact that I see so many offhanded remarks in a particular vein, however, shows me that there is a trend in people’s thinking. A trend I don’t much appreciate.
It seems that a mom is regarded as . . . someone different. Someone not quite part of society. Someone who has opinions and interests, but they’re just mom opinions and interests.
A few years ago, someone posted a link to a DIY project, saying “Hey, this looks cool, but ignore the mombloggery writing.”
So, basically, the information is valuable, but the person writing it is not, because she’s a mother? Who blogs? Did you ever consider that maybe she just has an annoying writing style? And happens to be a mom? Who blogs? Trust me, there are plenty of blogs out there, written by moms, that are not cutesy and obnoxious-sounding.
Next, and this is much more recently, someone posted a status in rebuttal to all of the parents annoyed by fireworks keeping their children awake. This person stated that “listening to someone’s screaming child in a grocery store (for 20 minutes out of their day) is much higher on the annoyance scale compared to a few nights of bangs and booms (that will turn into 7 or 8 days of complete schedule screwery that results in a higher potential for more screaming at more stores).” This, of course, led to a discussion about whether people are good parents or not, based on whether their kids are “behaving” in a store.
Parenting. The one profession in which you get dismissed as something trivial while simultaneously having all of your decisions actively judged by society.
The part of this status that really made me want to flip out was that the person tried to placate the inevitably offended parents in his friend-base by saying that “Someday, you and your kids are going to look cute as heck lighting off fireworks blah blah blah.” Paraphrasing again. But not on the “cute as heck” part.
Here’s the deal: I do not care about whether or not my kids and I will look cute someday launching off mini war-heads. You know what I care about? Cultivating kids who are decent human beings. See, that’s what people forget. I know that social media makes it seem like moms are really just out there to take cute Instagrammed photos of small people making macaroni necklaces, but we’re actually trying to do legitimate things over here in Parent Land. We’re working our butts off every day, doing our best to keep the world from being swarmed by douchebags in the future. (I’m sorry everyone, I really tried to pick a better word than douchebag, but it was the one that really felt good here.) I don’t care if you think we’re doing a good job or not; that’s for another discussion. The fact is, we’re trying, and we’re trying hard.
I just saw a post today that (even though I KNOW it was a completely harmless, well-intended one) seemed to suggest that one of my mom friends wouldn’t enjoy the things she used to enjoy. You know, back in the day, before she turned into a crazy parent-doppleganger of her old self? Did my friend take offense at this? Probably not . . . but I don’t think she’s quite as bitter about this as I am.
So, in review:
1. Parenthood has made me different, however, I am still essentially the same person I was before I created ankle-biters with my body.
2. Be aware that under the photo-filtering, crust-cutting, sunscreen-rubbing veneer, there is a person with legitimate knowledge and opinions that pertain to things other than Blue’s Clues and baby shampoo. We are people with degrees, and/or with years of real-world experience in different areas, and you might be surprised that we can contribute to conversations that people have in the real world.
Listen, I know that most, maybe all of the people reading this are going to be like, “Duh, Lauren. We know this. Stop inadvertently yelling at us.” But, ohmygosh, there are some people out there who need to eat a giant truth sandwich when it comes to the act of child-rearing. Most likely they’ll have decided to eat at the Jumping to Conclusions Java Joint across the street, but trust me guys, I’m whipping them up over here and I’m open 24 hours.
That last sentence was ridiculous, but I like it so I’m keeping it anyway.